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Synchronise Typefaces

Posted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 9:26 am
by Bhikkhu Pesala
When working on four typestyles of a font, it would be useful to have some way of synchronising the overviews so that the same glyphs from each typestyle are displayed in tiled windows. One way to do this is with bookmarks. Currently, go to bookmark works for the current window. With a synchronise option switched on go to bookmark and find could apply to all open windows (whether they are tiled or not).
synchronise_windows.png (68.12 KiB) Viewed 11268 times

Re: Synchronise Typefaces

Posted: Fri Feb 11, 2005 11:20 pm
by sevry7
Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:When working on four typestyles of a font, it would be useful to have some way of synchronising
There's another type of 'synchronizing'. But I think trying to add features might be counterproductive. I think what's needed is scripting. Provide the basic macro capability, and let people add the features they want. You should see the modules and pages and pages of subs and functions in one of my Access databases, features Microsoft might have provided, but I'm glad they didn't try.

Let's say you have a matching regular, bold, italic and italic bold. But you really start in on the regular font, and add 100 new placeholders for the missing character glyph, and add a bunch of new stuff in one of the Unicode pages. It might be nice to push a button and have the other three font files synch up, so that if they have something in that position, they keep it, otherwise the new info from the regular is copied in, automatically. It would be almost prohibitive to manually enter say 200 new cells in three different fonts, to get them to sync up. Maybe in this case it's not so bad, since as I understand it, the default character maps only show the regular font. But perhaps other character map apps are more thorough, and would show separately for the others? Anyway - just an example.

Posted: Sat Feb 12, 2005 8:32 am
by Bhikkhu Pesala
If you want to add the same characters to several fonts, use the insert character feature to select all of the new characters you wish to add. Then, before you click OK to add them, copy the character ranges to the clipboard.

For example, cut and paste this text to the insert characters dialogue box to add all superscripts, subscripts, and fractions, plus the fraction slash:


Then create a suitable glyph for the fraction slash, perhaps by rotating the regular slash / slightly. Select the new range of characters, and complete composites to add the range of new composite glyphs.

Posted: Sat Feb 12, 2005 8:22 pm
by sevry7
Doesn't that, in a way, itself suggest a place for macros/scripting? There are a number of steps. If one knew they needed this beforehand, or wrote it so a dialog appeared asking for certain parameters, you could program it to work at the 'touch of a button'. It could be done instantly. Again, maybe being new to this I don't have the best examples. But scripting, generally, greatly enhances any program. It's just the question of language, of how to call scripts (assigning to buttons, editing buttons, keys, menus, etc), and the extent of exposure of your 'engine' to the scripting. Again, I just think it would be a great addition.

Posted: Sat Feb 12, 2005 8:55 pm
by Bhikkhu Pesala
Scripting is undoubtedly more flexible, if you know how to write scripts or modify them for your own needs. It is on the todo list, but I'm not sure how soon it will be implemented. I believe that hinting support is the top priority. Meanwhile, a keyboard macro program can be used.

I could easily write a macro to do exactly what I requested, but I would much rather have the feature as part of the program.

Posted: Mon Feb 14, 2005 3:48 pm
by Jowaco
I too would like to be able to synchronise open windows but they would be Edit windows . Very often I work with two fonts tiled vertically. The fonts might be entirely different fonts or perhaps two copies of the same font; it matters not. I regularly step through the fonts to compare, or maybe, alter, the glyphs in them, but this requires the sequence
  • click left window to make that active
  • click direction (blue arrow button)
  • click in right window to make that active
  • click direction (blue arrow button)

How nice it would be to have a synchronise button so that on stepping back and forth both windows showed the same glyph.

Of course this would fail if the sort order for the fonts differed.

Yes. I've just discoverd that the image host I use allows .gif files! Heigh ho! :oops:


Posted: Mon Mar 21, 2005 5:39 pm
by Bhikkhu Pesala
I just discovered through some feedback from someone who installed it, that my Serif Garland font was not switching to italics, but only making an oblique faux font.

I tracked this down to a difference in the weight setting between the regular and italic typestyles. The regular typeface had inadvertently got changed to normal weight, but the italic typeface was medium weight. Both bold and bold italic were bold weight.

I wonder if there might be some way to synchronise a set of four typestyles to check for differences like this that would cause problems, as part of the Font Validation process. Things to compare:
  • Font naming fields
  • Unicode Ranges
  • Font weights
  • What else?

Posted: Mon Mar 21, 2005 6:52 pm
by Erwin Denissen
I'll add it to the to-do list. For now this might help:

Required Font Family settings:

On the Format menu, click Settings, and then click the General tab.
  • Classification - Weight
    Make sure your Regular and Italic fonts have the same Weight. For example:
    Normal (Regular)
    Make sure your Bold and Bold Italic fonts have the same Weight. For example:

    Classification - Width
    Make sure all fonts in the same font family have the same Width.
Make sure these settings are correct for all four fonts:
  • Mac Style and Font Design fields - on the Format menu, click Settings and then click the Metrics tab.

    All font subfamily name fields in the Naming window. This can be done through the AutoNaming feature.

For the Italic and Bold Italic fonts
  • Set Italic Angle to a negative value (e.g. -16.33) - on the Format menu, click Settings and then click on the Post tab.
    Set Caret Slope values through Calculate Rise and Run - on the Format menu, click Settings and then click on the General tab.

Posted: Thu Apr 28, 2005 7:58 pm
by Bhikkhu Pesala
Something else that needs to be synchronised is font metrics. Using calculate font metrics won't match fonts from all four typestyles Calculate should calculate an average or maximum across all four typestyles.

Try this test in a DTP package or word-processor:

• Apply Times New Roman to a paragraph of text
• Apply italics, bold, or bold italics to the entire text, or a few sentences.
• Notice how the line-spacing remains consistent.

Now try this with a font you have edited and calculated the metrics for. Line-spacing will change when you apply bold or italics.

There is no way that line-spacing should be altered by applying bold or italics. It is just plain wrong. Applying bold or italics to some words is bound to affect the tracking of the paragraph, and may add or reduce a few lines of text to the paragraph, but the line-spacing should remain fixed, whether the paragraph contains bold or italic text or not.

Posted: Thu Apr 28, 2005 9:55 pm
by Erwin Denissen
Bhikkhu Pesala,

This is an excellent addition to the other requirements. I'll add this to the to-do list as well. As Font Creator is not 'family aware', this will probably end up in the user manual.

Posted: Fri Apr 29, 2005 7:13 pm
by Bhikkhu Pesala
I developed a Perfect Keyboard Pro macro to do this. Now it is easy to ensure consistency across a font. Open the four typestyles, auto calculate or manually set the font metrics for the Regular typestyle, and run the macro. The code is pretty transparent. Carriage returns in the code execute a carriage return.

Code: Select all

It would be great to have a scripting language built in to Font Creator, but if anyone wants to automate the boring task of editing fonts I recommend this program (or one like it). Automation not only speeds up data entry, it eliminates errors. As long as you don't make a mistake in the code :oops: then you get loads of errors, but at least you're errors are consistent, so they're easier to put right.

Code: Select all

Roman	1556	-426	205	1917	-483	1917	-483	303
Bold	1556	-426	205	1917	-483	1917	-483	303
Italic	1556	-426	205	1917	-483	1917	-483	303
BItalic 1556	-426	205	1917	-483	1917	-483	303

Synchronise Windows Option

Posted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 8:35 am
by Bhikkhu Pesala
I tile windows vertically when editing cntours to compare details for two fonts or two glyphs from the same font. For example, after making Small Caps I compare the lowercase to the uppercase, or when making a bold typeface I compare a glyph to the same glyph in the regular typeface.
Synchronise Windows.png
Synchronise Windows.png (22.23 KiB) Viewed 9333 times
Currently, If I am working on the right-hand window and select a tool, say the zoom in tool and zoom in to the right-hand glyph, I have to select it again to zoom in to the left-hand glyph. I think it would be helpful to have a synchronise Windows option on the Windows menu with the following results.

:arrow: Tool selection works for both windows
:arrow: The pan tool pans both windows
:arrow: The scroll arrows scroll to the previous/next glyph in both windows
:arrow: The points/contour nodes are synchronised
:arrow: Zoom in/Zoom out zoom both windows
:arrow: Fit to Window should work in both windows
:arrow: Selection of nodes should not work in both windows, only the selection tools should become active for each window

What else?

Posted: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:06 am
by Erwin Denissen
I'll add this request to the wish list. I'm curious about what other users have to say about this.

I like it!

Posted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 12:31 am
by Dave Crosby
I think it would be very handy.

Re: Synchronise Typefaces

Posted: Fri Jun 12, 2015 11:06 am
by Bhikkhu Pesala
Here's an updated screen shot for FontCreator 9.0 with six types styles displayed in tiled windows. I have resized the screen shot to 50% to suit the forum width in most browsers.
Synchronise Font Styles.jpg
Synchronise Font Styles.jpg (70.85 KiB) Viewed 8279 times